MoCCA Fest 2010: The reckoning

April 12th, 2010
MoCCA Fest 2010: The reckoning

A number of factors led MoCCA Fest 2010 to be a different experience for me than SPX. Number 1, I was not frozen solid by the climate system on the second day, and I did not have some kind of broken knee…

Number 2 was the difference in venue. SPX had an ebullience about it that was just fun. MoCCA seemed more business-like–this possibly owing to the dull, well-worn surroundings of the armory where it took place. I do think it was a huge show that was more packed than SPX. The aisles were certainly wider.

Number 3, I was by myself, and could not roam. Luckily, I had three great neighbors:

To my left was the amicable Canadian Mike Kitchen of Ultraist Studios. He and his brother (absent) are a rival team; Blair Kitchen makes The Possum. They both deserve every bit of attention they can wring from you!

To my right were Caitlin Cass and her boyfriend Aaron, two lovely people who did quite well over the weekend! Her subject matter is similar to Kate Beaton’s histories, but it is far more romantically done.

I also got to see my bud Andrew Edge over at Cool Monkey Press again. He was finally able to bring Issue 3 of his Grizzly and Caticus series to light. I recommend you check out his ink work if you haven’t seen his site already. He’s a fantastic artist. It’s too bad he doesn’t have his print work up there–it’s ace.

Number 4, my discovery of the show: Stephanie Yue.

Hell yeah. I was so downtrodden when I saw this site hadn’t been updated for two years! I hope she makes more of these guys. I noticed her from the other side of my aisle and thought they were pictures of dancing first. On closer inspection, I was blown out of my boots, and so happy to be wrong that I instantly bought two posters from her. One of them is a short fight scene that is not on her site. It’s fantastic. Maybe I’ll just draw cute art from now on.

She has a more general site for her art, Jelly City, that definitely deserves a look. The site with the wu shu mice is www.learnmousestyle.com in case you’d like to bookmark it.

Finally, number 5, were the readers who came down to the show to see me. You guys made my day[s]. Lexa, I’m so sorry I didn’t have the correct change! Thanks to everyone for stopping by to say hi. I’m so dumb; I should have struck up a conversation or something. Everyone I met who was casually browsing the show used the adjective “overwhelming,” and they were right.

Looking forward to next year. I’ve already registered again!

MoCCA Fest 2010

April 5th, 2010
MoCCA Fest 2010

NofNA will be appearing at this year’s MoCCA Festival, located at the 69th Regiment Armory, 68 Lexington Ave, New York City. (In between 25th and 26th streets.) The new book, Untitled, will also be debuting here, and I will be doing free sketches as last time.

Please come and visit. Click here for a quick indication of where I will be stationed.

Pika

April 1st, 2010
Pika

If you liked the April Fool’s Day arc, Pika, and would like to see it again, here’s the link:
http://www.nofna.com/index2.php?chapter=Pika

10%+ Books Again in Stock

March 18th, 2010
10%+ Books Again in Stock

If you missed out on the first printing, now is a good time to secure your printed copy. All orders come with a small sketch on the back of a scenic postcard. A link to the store is here.

If you have any special instructions, remember to click the “Return to Merchant” button after you complete your order.

In a similar vein, the first 24 pages of Lycosa, while relevant to the story, may act on their own as a stand-alone story. These have been collected into another book, complete with extra art. Expect this 52-page book due sometime in May.

Lycosa Begins

February 24th, 2010
Lycosa Begins

The new NofNA arc, Lycosa, officially begins.

Due to the alien nature of spiders and their kin, I have prepared a quick primer for Lycosa designed to demystify their world. By reading the following pages, spiders will seem a little less weird and a little more like everything else living. Read the rest of this entry »

Interview with Sloane Leong

February 21st, 2010
Interview with Sloane Leong

Escape from Suicide Wolf Forest is a comics blog created and maintained in part by a talented compatriot of mine, Sloane Leong. She recently interviewed me about NofNA, asking some popular questions. Click here to read the article.

As a corollary to this, I would like you to check out Sloane’s own works at her website, http://www.war.respark.net. I can’t recommend them highly enough.

Secretary ends

January 12th, 2010
Secretary ends

Secretary ends today. Thanks for reading.

The original synopsis I wrote down for myself before the story was started:

Secretary: Definition 1b in the Mirriam-Webster unabridged dictionary. “Those itineraries, always distracting me, holding me back. Form, style, function. Holding me back!! NO MORE!” (Throws the chewing wood against the tree) “I unfetter myself! This is the reality. You were holding me back from the truth! The power! I shall go beyond order, and obtain that truth–and with it, my vindication!” Lets tooth grow out. Also, this conversation, regarding how the liquidation effect works on the animals: “Have you ever wondered why that telenoetic effect spreads to the body, but not outside the body? This fur for example.. (plucks out a single hair) is it still a part of the body?” “Metanoesis works on life. Telenoesis works on the absence of life.” “That’s true. But why does it extend to those dead things on the body. If the body is an object, how can that influence spread? Weight buffers. Metanoias. They all spread to the body.” “I don’t know. A local influence?” “Plants can’t receive metanoias. Insects barely receive it. I think it has something to do with will.”

The opportunity to exploit the final conversation there never arose. The story took on a life of its own as the concept of malice was introduced as the secretary’s metanoia. This change, along with the introduction of the foil “Nutsedge,” redirected the entire story from its outset.

As the pages rolled into double digits, two goals became apparent to me:

1. Create an invisible antagonist.

2. Pervasive antagony; no character is beneficial to another character.

These goals were chosen in order to create a scenario that is reminiscent of a typical conflict in our world. An invisible antagonist creates an atmosphere of malaise. Pervasive antagony gives meaning to this malaise while keeping its source amorphous. Who is malicious? Everyone. Who is on the receiving end of such malice? Everyone. This reflection of a malicious environment was intended to give readers pause about their own personal conflicts and the nature of the “malicious” intents behind them. The relationships of every character to each other contained some form of both malicious receipt and malicious intent.

This tapped a very deep well with the question, “what is malice?” The well was so deep, in fact, that I was also surprised; the malice style had to be expanded into two versions from its initial singular concept:

Metralgia, the cycle of passing down malicious action at the behest of the superego. Recipients attack, and in doing so, reinforce their own defeats.

Hemialgia, the freedom from Metralgia that is cancerous to this revised ego.

The crux of the story became SV’s struggle with the weight of his own innovation. In passing down one’s own malicious experiences to other people, one’s own past defeats become justified.

The more I thought about it, the more this structure mimicked language and empathy—two incorrigible bastions of our genome that make our species what it is, both in terms of benevolence and malice. It was the stubborn nature of the very hardware that conceived it that made Hemialgia as effective and deadly a tool as it was.

Fortunately, we are not animal society. We have a few more years under our belt. With care, we can use that history in order to become more aware of our own destructive impulses, no matter how small. In order to do that, we need to absolve the roots of those impulses.

And that requires recognition of the roots.

The next arc will commence in one week’s time.

NofNA Books in Store: 10%+

December 12th, 2009
NofNA Books in Store: 10%+

Back in September, I received my first cache of the book version of 10%+, with the intent of ordering more. Due to promotional giveaways and sales (Thanks to Julie, Jeremy, and Andrew for the first sales), I am now in need of new stock, but my re-order has not yet been processed by my printer.

What stock I have is now up for sale in the new NofNA store. This way, you may be able to receive some books in time for Christmas. Volume 5 is already sold out.

Paypal is the method being used for transactions. I am under the impression that Paypal also takes credit cards; you do not need to have a Paypal account to order. I am not sure if credit cards work for international orders.

Please note that after you place your order, there will be a link to go back to the NofNA site. Please click this link; it is a thank-you page. You may input any special instructions to include with your order on this page.

Thanks for reading Nature of Nature’s Art.

New site features

October 10th, 2009
New site features

New features have been added to the website.

One, is NofNA’s inclusion into Archive Binge‘s automated RSS feed system. By registering for an account there, you will have the ability to create custom RSS feeds for NofNA and a slough of other webcomics. Check it out. It’s especially useful for viewing a bunch of pages at once, delivered to your RSS reader at regular intervals.

Two, is that comments may now be previewed before their submission. Use this to double-check your longer, more analytical comments. Keep in mind that linking is still unavailable due to spam prevention purposes.

Three, is the linking to NofNA’s mirror at Webcomics Nation. Use this site to view the latest update if something goes wrong with the main site.

Four, is 10%+’s refinement. The expletives have been replaced in order to make the story more accessible, and portions of animal culture have been re-emphasized. Of especial note is the deletion of the word “animal” from casual conversation; it is now substituted with “human.” This keeps the language and the culture consistent.

SPX

September 28th, 2009
SPX

The human brain is especially sensitive to comparison, but I don’t think I had an especially good time at SPX because I busted my leg on the first day. It did add spice to the event, but there was so much going on, and so many artists exhibiting, that the entire exhibition carried the sweet air of prospect for all attending. I talked with a one Matt Rhodes and he mentioned how people had been telling him that they had to leave the room, there were so many artistic efforts coming at spectators from so many angles.

My sister and her friends Sarah and Soo were stationed with me at our table as we watched the passing throng peruse the wares. Some people stopped to say hello, and some had to soldier on and devote their attentions elsewhere. Maybe it was because it was absolutely FRIGID there thanks to the hotel’s overzealous climate control; we were right under a register. But we got to experience the dynamics of a suffused marketplace firsthand. We were all the way in the back, so I can’t help but think that our location and ambient temperature hurt our chances at selling. But it was our first time too. I took down a bunch of ideas that should make my display even more eye-catching, including more affordable comics, like the upcoming Tortoise and the Hare mini comic. We’re going to come back next year stronger than before thanks to the data we’ve all gathered. MoCCA is next… or possibly King Con since I’m right there, near Brooklyn. Kelly, are you reading this?

On the other side of the table, it was a lot of fun to browse. I shook hands with a bunch of cool people, including Rice Boy‘s Evan Dahm and the man and CEO behind comiXpress who handled my order, Logan DeAngelis. I had two great abutting tablemates, Andrew Edge of Cool Monkey Press (I bought a print of a great portrait he did of Frank Zappa) and David Allan Duncan (At the end of the con, we agreed to trade–my 10%+ Addendum for his The Moonshine Murders series). Unfortunately, I am not the kind of person who thinks to take photographs, but I’m glad I could have these memories. Next time, I want to have the protocol that’ll let me approach even more people.

I think the highlight of the convention was meeting the NofNA fans who came by to the table. Sorry about the cold, guys. Thanks for stopping by. Great meeting you! There was one person who I missed. Who are ya? Sorry I wasn’t there–Mr. Rhodes, above, invited me to draw in a light-based medium. Really cool idea; I couldn’t say no!

Hope to see you at the next convention.

I still have to program the NofNA store, so the books are not going to go on sale just yet. I’ll let everyone know when they do with a big fanfare.